Great Expectations: Marketing Automation Delivers on the Promise to Grow Sales Revenue

The world of marketing automaton is alive and very well, thank you! Major vendors are growing 30% to 100%+ per year, while the number of marketing departments using marketing automation is climbing dramatically. Case in point: The Pedowitz Group. We were recently inducted into the 2012 Inc. 500 ranking America’s fastest-growing private companies…living proof of the power of marketing automation to increase profits.

The question is not what is the state of marketing automation, but rather, what difference does marketing automation make to a company’s growth? We call this Revenue Marketing, which means, marketing is making a measurable contribution to revenue. This is the ultimate promise of marketing automation, from which sales and marketing teams benefit most.

“Does marketing automation make a business difference?” This is the key question answered in a recent study by Lenskold Group and sponsored by The Pedowitz Group. Since this reading audience is comprised of both sales and marketing professionals, let’s review this report according to three factors:

  1. What data matters to the Chief Sales Officer (CSO)
  2. What data matters to the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) and
  3. What matters to both?

Today’s CMO cares about increased outcomes (revenue), having strategic support for Revenue Marketing initiatives and being able to take a holistic approach to these new marketing capabilities. Today’s CSO cares about revenue, growth, better leads and bigger deals.

What matters to the CSO?         

CSO Point #1: Want to outgrow your competition?

Of course! Companies outgrowing their competitors are more likely to use integrated marketing automation (66% vs 50% of slower/same growth companies). The definition of integrated marketing automation is the use of full-featured marketing automation (like Marketo or Eloqua) integrated with CRM. This is an area of technology and process that enables marketing to impact revenue in a significant way. It’s a fast-growth area of technology experiencing and it’s here to stay.
Is your marketing group using integrated marketing automation?

CSO Point #2: What is the role of marketing at companies outgrowing their competition?

Never thought of this one, did you? Companies outgrowing their competitors are more likely to have experienced an increase in total marketing revenue contribution from marketing automation (55% vs 31% of slower/same growth companies). This data highlights the role of Revenue Marketing in competitive advantage. It also points out that faster growth companies have marketing departments that can actually measure the impact marketing is making on revenue. How’s your marketing group performing?

CSO Point #3: Want to increase average deal size?

Well, it’s your lucky day! 28% of marketing teams that use marketing automation reported an increase in the average deal size from a marketing qualified lead that was passed to sales. Why? Because they are nurturing and educating that lead, scoring the lead based on demographics (Is it qualified?), behavior and online behavior (Is there intent to buy?), until it’s ready for a conversation with your sales team. This allows the sales team to have a deeper, richer sales conversation that leads to a higher average deal size. Sound good? How is your marketing group tracking this key metric?

What matters to the CMO?

CMO Point #1: How is marketing measured and what difference does that make to top line revenue growth?

Of the companies using marketing automation and ROI metrics, 69% reported an increase in total marketing revenue contribution. Contrast this with the 19% increase in total marketing revenue contribution reported by users of only traditional marketing metrics. These data points indicate that marketing automation is not enough; a focus on ROI metrics by marketing is equally important. I’d also like to point out here that you can’t calculate ROI without being able to measure revenue. Is your marketing group measuring and reporting their direct influence on revenue?

CMO Point #2: Show me the numbers!

Numbers, metrics, revenue, pipeline —are the mantra of today’s successful CMO. If marketing is going to play in this game, they need to run marketing like sales — by the numbers.

So, here you go! Wouldn’t you like your marketing organization to make this kind of impact on your business?

The chart below shows marketing groups that use marketing automation report improvements in: number of leads to sales, better qualified leads to sales, sales accepting leads, contribution to revenue, lead to closed sale conversion and revenue per sale. Does your marketing group report on these metrics?

CMO Point #3: Taking a holistic approach to the numbers.

Successful marketers understand there are many elements that impact how and how much they can impact revenue performance of their company. Companies that use integrated marketing automation take a holistic approach (tools, processes, organizational structure, skills, alignment with sales and content) to revenue marketing to help drive success.


For marketing automation to deliver on its promise, the CMO and CSO must ensure that their people understand they are all accountable for revenue. They are on the same team. A clear understanding of their respective roles in the process of Revenue Marketing is essential. The CMO must hire people with the right skill sets to execute the best practices identified in this research. While marketing automation software is not the great panacea, it continues to prove itself as one of the wisest investments a company can make to impact the topline.

About the Author:

Debbie Qaqish is Principal Partner and Chief Revenue Marketing Officer for The Pedowitz Group, the authority in Revenue Marketing Transformation™. A nationally recognized thought leader, Qaqish has over 30 years of experience helping organizations connect marketing to revenue. She is a pioneer in marketing automation — first as a beneficiary of the technology and now as an advocate and expert. Debbie was just named one of the Top 10 Most Influential People in Sales Lead Management.

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